Sea Duck Joint Venture

A Conservation Partnership under the North American Waterfowl Management Plan

Sea Duck Joint Venture

Recommendations for Monitoring North American Sea Ducks

Recommendations for Monitoring Distribution, Abundance, and Trends of North American Sea Ducks

The Sea Duck Monitoring Working Group, an ad hoc group formed under the auspices of the Sea Duck Joint Venture (SDJV), met March 9-11, 2005, at Patuxent Wildlife Research Center, Laurel, Maryland to develop recommendations for monitoring sea duck populations in North America. The most current draft report is now available (see below)

The Sea Duck Monitoring Working Group was formed at the request of the SDJV Management Board to identify and prioritize monitoring needs for North American sea ducks. The working group met in March 2005 and produced a list of high, medium, and low priority monitoring needs. The process involved four steps:

  1. Identify populations or stocks that are appropriate as management units;
  2. Determine relative conservation priorities among stocks;
  3. Identify appropriate monitoring tasks for those stocks; and
  4. Prioritize among surveys or tasks.

In addition, the working group identified activities that should be accomplished to design, evaluate the feasibility, or enable interpretation of specific surveys. A prioritized list of monitoring needs is presented to help guide decisions about how to allocate current and future funds. The working group also recognized that nearly every sea duck species is currently inadequately monitored, and that opportunities to monitor populations or conduct sea duck surveys should be encouraged and pursued when appropriate and cost effective. Further prioritization will undoubtedly be needed as new information becomes available and alternative survey techniques are tested.

Note: A SDJV technical subcommittee is currently reviewing progress made in monitoring sea ducks since the 2007 report was written and in 2018 will be developing monitoring priorities that will address management and conservation needs for North American sea ducks.

Download 2007 Monitoring Report (pdf)


The SDJV promotes the conservation of all North American sea ducks through partnerships by providing greater knowledge and understanding for effective management.

E-Newsletter Signup